A rupture is a break or tear in something that pulls it apart. A rupture can be a literal break, like the one that happens in, say, a gas line, or it can be more figurative, as in a friendship or a business deal.
The oil spill was less of a spill that it was a rupture: the line leading to the well was severed, allowing the oil to flow into the ocean. Rupture works as both a noun and a verb. You can rupture the silence by screaming your head off, and any number of events in Star Trek can cause a rupture in the space-time continuum.
n state of being torn or burst open
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rupture in smooth muscle tissue through which a bodily structure protrudes
herniated disc, ruptured intervertebral disc, slipped disc
a painful rupture of the fibrocartilage of the disc between spinal vertebrae; occurs most often in the lumbar region
hernia projecting into the vagina
a herniation through the muscular wall of a tubular organ (especially the colon)
protrusion of the intestine through the abdominal wall
an umbilical hernia at birth in which some abdominal organs push into the umbilical cord
diaphragmatic hernia, hiatal hernia, hiatus hernia
hernia resulting from the protrusion of part of the stomach through the diaphragm
hernia in which a loop of intestine enters the inguinal canal; the most common type of hernia in males
hernia of the cornea
hernia through the abdomen
omphalocele, umbilical hernia
protrusion of the intestine and omentum through a hernia in the abdominal wall near the navel; usually self correcting after birth
n a personal or social separation (as between opposing factions)
the period from 1378 to 1417 during which there were two papacies in the Roman Catholic Church, one in Rome and one in Avignon
the formal separation of a church into two churches or the withdrawal of one group over doctrinal differences